IAA preview: Schmitz’s slimmer self03 August 2018

Weight reduction has become something of a mantra at European trailer builder Schmitz Cargobull. It has put many of its products on a strict diet to boost payload and cut fuel usage and CO2 emissions, reports Steve Banner

The S.CS Mega curtainsider semi-trailer with the Genios chassis has undergone a 300kg weight reduction, while its S.CS Universal curtainsider stablemate has slimmed down by 200kg. Schmitz has gone on to reduce the weight of its M.CS/Z.CS maximum-length 38-Euro-pallet MEGA drawbar curtainsider combination by a total of 500kg. “The Z.CS centre-axle drawbar trailer now weighs just 4.4 tonnes,” reports product manager Frank Reinartz.

Also, with the Stage V regulations set to come into force in January 2019, restrictions on emissions from diesel-driven truck and trailer refrigeration systems are getting tighter. In response, trailer manufacturing giant Schmitz Cargobull has been busy redesigning its S.CU fridge unit. At its heart is a compact four-cylinder 19kW industrial diesel engine built by Motorenfabrik Hatz using common rail technology. As well as running more cleanly, it is said to cut fuel consumption by up to 10% without compromising cooling performance.

Some 50kg lighter than its predecessor, S.CU can be used for both single- and multi-temperature work. Noise and vibration levels have been reduced, says the manufacturer.

All of these reductions have been achieved through painstaking engineering work over the past two years, says chief research and development officer Roland Klement, while at the same time ensuring that durability is not compromised. The work has included reducing the number of fastenings used, and the thickness of various profiles. “We’ve also made greater use of high-strength steel,” he says. “Aluminium would not bring us the sort of cost benefit we are looking for.”

In addition, Schmitz has introduced a new curtain for curtainsiders under the Power Curtain banner. Heavily reinforced with aramid fibre belts and steel wire, it should make it far harder for thieves and illegal immigrants to slash their way into the load area.

At the lighter end of the scale, Schmitz is entering a new sector of the market with the introduction of dry freight last-mile home delivery box bodies for 3.5-tonne chassis (above). The V.KO bodies are in production at the company’s Berlin factory, which can assemble 7,500 annually.

Finally, Schmitz is energetically promoting the use of telematics through its SmartTrailer programme. Based around a new generation of onboard hardware known as CTU-3, it enables all of a trailer’s key features to be linked to a central unit so they can be monitored remotely.

Steve Banner

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